Volunteer or donate
You can make a difference when you volunteer at or donate to the VA Wilkes-Barre Healthcare System.
Become a volunteer
The Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center depends on the goodwill of our volunteers and benefactors to supplement our workforce, improve the workplace atmosphere, and make Veterans’ experiences more enjoyable. Join our volunteer team and experience the rewards of helping our nation’s heroes.
To become a volunteer, please call the Wilkes-Barre health care’s Center for Development and Civic Engagement office.
Requirements for Becoming a Volunteer
We welcome individuals of all backgrounds and abilities. Because of the nature of care being delivered at our VA, all volunteers are carefully screened and individually matched to their assignments.
Volunteers are required to complete the following:
- Volunteer Application
- Background Investigation
- General Orientation
- Job Specific Competencies
- COVID-19 vaccinations and Influenza vaccination
This process is not only meant to ensure the safety and well-being of our Veterans and their families but provide a successful volunteer experience as well.
In addition to supporting Veterans, you’ll enjoy the following benefits as a VA volunteer:
- Increase your physical and mental activity
- Improve your physical and mental health
- Extend your life
- Free annual flu shot and COVID vaccinations
- Make new friends
- Be part of a team
- Feel needed, make a positive impact
- Gain a sense of pride, satisfaction, and achievement
- Share your skills
- Give back – contribute to society
- Fulfill your civic duty
- Serve those who have served our country
- Set the example for family, friends, and co-workers
- Explore career paths
- Learn new skills
- Build your resume
- Earn volunteer hours
We have many volunteer opportunities for you, your family, friends, and co-workers. Assignments may vary but your involvement can make a real difference in the life of a Veteran patient. Below are our current available volunteer opportunities, however, if you have special skills to offer please contact the Center for Development and Civic Engagement at 570-821-7237 so we can discuss how you can best use your talents to help our Veteran patients.
Allentown, Sayre, and Williamsport Clinic Volunteer: Volunteers greet Veterans and visitors when entering the building, assist Veterans with VETEXT, offer directional assistance, complete reminder calls, and other various components to provide great Patient Experience.
Audiology Volunteer: Volunteers assist audiology technicians with stocking shelves, organizing supplies, and setting up clinical areas for audiologists. This position is available at WBVAMC and AOPC.
Canteen Volunteer: Volunteers assist Veterans Canteen Service (VCS) employees with stocking shelves, unloading merchandise, and prepare areas for seasonal sales. Volunteers also assist Veterans with shopping (if needed) or help customers during their shopping experience.
Caregiver Support Volunteer: Volunteers are assigned as a Peer Mentor to a caregiver as part of the VA National Caregiver Peer Support Mentoring Program. Through this relationship, Peer Mentors provide advice, support, and guidance to their Mentee, mostly via telephone-mail and informally. Guidance is provided by the Wilkes-Barre Caregiver Support Coordinator. Note: This position is strictly for Veteran Caregivers.
CLC Comfort Volunteer: These volunteers provide assurance, warmth, and individualized attention to Veteran residents in the Community Living Center. Volunteers assist with serving coffee, passing water, escorting Veterans to and from medical appointments in the hospital, and visit with Veterans that would benefit from socialization such as: reading, talking, watching TV, playing cards, etc. Note: In addition to being COVID vaccinated and wearing a mask, volunteers assisting in the CLC must agree to 1x weekly COVID testing through Employee Health to ensure the safety of our Veterans, volunteers, and employees.
Compassionate Contact Corps: Volunteers provide Veterans with conversation and companionship via phone visits or video chat. Visits often involve sharing life stories and topics of mutual interest with a compassionate, friendly voice in a safe non-judgmental process. This is a virtual volunteer assignment.
Courtesy Shuttle Driver: Provide transportation assistance from the parking lots to the medical center to Veterans and visitors who may have mobility limitations. To fill this important role, you must have a current driver’s license and car insurance, pass a background check, and pass a physical exam.
DAV Volunteer Driver: Volunteer drivers provide transportation to Veterans in need of medical care at the Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center or CBOC sites. Positions available in the following areas: Allentown, Clarks Summit, Carbon County (Jim Thorpe), Hazleton, Honesdale, Northampton County, Shamokin, Scranton, Stroudsburg/E. Stroudsburg, Tamaqua, Tobyhanna, Williamsport, and Wilkes-Barre. To fill this important role, you must have a current driver’s license and car insurance, pass a background check, and pass a physical exam.
Home Health Assistant: Volunteers assist the Community Care Supervisor with administrative duties such as obtaining physician signatures, mailings, and faxing.
Memory Care Volunteer: Volunteers assist Occupational and Recreation Therapists with keeping Veterans diagnosed with Alzheimer’s Disease or related dementias engaged during programs such as bingo, cooking groups, functional exercise groups, gardening, etc., assist with activity set-up and clean-up, providing escort to and from programs/activities, engage residents in individual activities such as reminiscence, listening to music, reading, trivia, checkers, chess, etc. Note: In addition to being COVID vaccinated and wearing a mask, volunteers assisting in the CLC must agree to 1x weekly COVID testing to ensure the safety of our Veterans, volunteers, and employees.
MOVE! Buddy: Veterans who have successfully completed the MOVE! program may volunteer to become a MOVE! Buddy. Volunteers offer 1:1 support to current enrollees and assist Veterans in creating their plans of change along with the MOVE! Coordinator. Note: This position is strictly for Veterans who have completed the MOVE! Program.
Food Service Volunteer: Assists Nutrition and Food Service with food preparation, receiving items, proper storage and sanitation, and interviewing Veterans for meal selections.
Primary Care Program Support Volunteer: Volunteers assist with retrieving and delivery of mail to multiple services and sorting mail for multiple medical providers and VA employees.
Recreation Therapy Volunteer: Volunteers assist Recreation Therapists and Assistants with providing escort to and from programs/activities, assist with keeping Veterans engaged during programs such as bingo, cooking groups, functional exercise groups, gardening, etc., assist with activity set-up and clean-up, and engage residents in individual activities such as: reminiscence, listening to music, reading, trivia, checkers, chess, etc. Note: In addition to being COVID vaccinated and mearing a mask, volunteers assisting in the CLC must agree to 1x weekly COVID testing through to ensure the safety of our Veterans, volunteers, and employees.
Red Coat Ambassadors: These volunteers can be found at the Information Desk inside the main entrance of the VA Medical Center. Their red coats or vests make them easy to spot and these volunteers provide assistance with navigation, information, and other various capacities of customer service.
Scranton Vet Center Volunteer: Volunteers assist the Vet Center employees with special projects/events and assist with office coverage (answering the phone greeting Veterans) during staff trainings.
Specialty Clinic Volunteer: Volunteers warmly greet Veterans receiving care in the Medical Specialty Clinic on 3West, assist Veterans with effectively and efficiently checking-in and checking-out for their medical appointments, escort Veterans to medical support assistants, and other various capacities of customer service.
Storage Room Specialist: Volunteers assist employees seeking items (i.e.: personal hygiene, clothes, leisure materials, etc.) for Veteran residents, inpatients, and other Veterans receiving care at the medical center or enrolled in a VA program. Volunteers will also ensure employees complete the sign out log appropriately, sort and stock shelves with incoming donations, monitor expiration dates and other duties as necessary.
Travel Claims Assistant: Volunteers will assist Veterans enrolling into the online travel system for travel reimbursement. Must have basic knowledge of web-based applications.
Make a donation
The Center for Development and Civic Engagement supports Veteran residents and patients as well as most services at the Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center, our Community Based Outpatient Clinics in Allentown, Northampton, Sayre, Tobyhanna and Williamsport, and the Scranton and Williamsport Vet Centers. Our mission is to enhance the Veterans’ healthcare experience through utilization of volunteers and donations.
Monetary donations made to the Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center help to fund recreation programs and purchase amenities that improve the quality of life for Veteran patients in our Community Living Center (Nursing Home), Mental Health, Substance Treatment and Recovery programs, Hospice, and other long-term and acute care inpatient areas.
In-Kind donations of specific items provide the supplemental resources necessary to support Veterans receiving care at any of our facilities. In-kind donations are goods such as gift cards for transportation, grocery shopping, restaurants, etc., comfort items, clothing, hygiene items, leisure materials, holiday gifts, canteen books, and much more. Rest assured, regardless of whether your donation has a specified purpose, all donations go directly to support the Veteran patients at the Wilkes-Barre VA Healthcare System. All contributions are used 100% to support the needs of the Veterans and are tax deductible to the extent allowable by law.
Donating is just a click away now that VA medical centers accept donations online. You just need a major credit card, debit card, checking account, or savings account.
Make an online donation
The actual donation is made through a secure site at the U.S. Department of Treasury. A minimum of $5.00 is required for all online donations through E-Donate.
Donate by mail
If you'd like to donate to the Wilkes-Barre VA Healthcare System, please send a check (payable to "Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center") to the following address:
Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center
Center for Development and Civic Engagement (135)
1111 East End Boulevard
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18711
Donate to a special fund
Monetary donations are used to support a variety of patient activities and services throughout the Wilkes-Barre VA Healthcare System. Donated funds accounts listed below are currently accepting donations to support Veterans receiving care in these programs. Simply choose a fund, write its number in the memo section on your check, and we’ll do the rest. If you don’t designate a special fund, your money will be put to good use in our general account. Please make checks payable to “Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center”.
Allentown Outpatient Clinic (Fund #8010) Funds are used to support programs and activities for Veteran patients at the Allentown Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC).
Arts and Humanities (Fund #8529) Funds are used to support programs for inpatient and outpatient Veterans participating in integrative health programs such as Yoga, Tai Chi, Art Therapy, Music Therapy, Meditation, etc. These funds may be used to purchase supplies and/or pay vendors to keep these programs running smoothly.
Behavioral Health (Fund #8070) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the Behavioral Health Program which includes the Intensive Community Mental Health and Recovery (ICMHR) program, inpatient psychiatry and other programs that assist in mental health recovery.
Canteen Books (Fund #8040) Funds are used to purchase canteen books from Veterans Canteen Service (VCS). Canteen books are commonly used as prizes during recreation programs and distributions. Veterans can use the books to purchase food and/or items from the on-site canteen.
Caregivers’ Support (Fund #8532) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the Caregiver’s Support Program. Family caregivers provide critical support in caring for our nation’s Veterans by allowing them to stay in their homes and communities. Items to support self-care (i.e. journals, art supplies), food/beverages for caregiver events/resource fairs, decorations, recreation/leisure items are commonly purchased.
Chaplain (Fund #8330) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the Chaplain Program.
Community Living Center (Fund #8110) Funds are used to support programs/needs of Veterans residing in the Community Living Center. Items commonly purchased include decorations for holidays/events, items for special celebrations, and supplies to make the neighborhoods more homelike and welcoming.
Equine Therapy (Fund #8534) Funds are used to support the Equine Therapy Program. This program incorporates horses into the therapeutic process and Veterans engage in activities such as grooming, feeding, and leading a horse while being supervised by a mental health professional. Goals of this program include helping Veterans develop skills such as emotional regulation, self-confidence, and responsibility.
Health Promotion Programs (Fund #8535) Funds are used to support activities such the MOVE! Weight Management Program, Healthy Teaching Kitchen and other programs where a healthy lifestyle is promoted.
Homeless Veterans (Fund #8460) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the Homeless Program. Comfort items include hygiene products, clothing, household goods, and food items. The funds are also used for the annual Homeless Program Summer Picnic and Holiday Parties.
Hospice/Palliative Care (Fund #8090) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the inpatient Hospice and Palliative Care Program. Comfort items such as hygiene products, clothing, blankets, snacks for both the Veteran and their family are commonly purchased. Funds are also used to stock the hospice kitchen with snacks, water, coffee, non-perishable food items that can be accessed by Veterans, and their family at any time. Meals for family members who are unable to leave the hospital are also provided through this account.
LBGTQ+ Program (Fund #8530) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the LGBTQ+ Program.
National Rehab Events (Fund #8220) Funds are used to support Veterans participating in National Events (i.e.: National Wheelchair Games, Golden Age Games, National Veterans Creative Arts Festival, DAV Winter Sports Clinic, etc.) by paying for the lodging/airfare and meal expenses. If a Veteran requires a caregiver to attend these events, money in this fund will be used to pay for lodging, airfare, and meals for the caregiver as well.
Northampton CBOC (Fund #8190) Funds are used to support programs and activities for Veteran patients at the Northampton Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC).
Outings (Fund #8132) Funds are used to support inpatient Veterans attending off station community outings (i.e.: baseball games, bowling, movies, fairs, and restaurants, museums, concerts, plays, etc.) Staff and volunteers attend community outings to meet the needs of Veterans, therefore money in this account may be used to purchase tickets for staff/volunteers in attendance if required. Also, when an outing to a restaurant or food related program requires volunteer assistance, the volunteer’s meal can be paid through this account. VA employees are not authorized to receive food items paid through this account.
OT Wellness (Fund #8431) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the OT Wellness Program.
Post 9/11 Military 2 VA (Fund #8191) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the Post 9/11 Military 2 VA Program. These funds are used for enrollment fairs, programming activities and to support any needs of returning Veterans and Post 9/11 Veterans and their families.
Recreation Therapy (Fund #8130) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the Recreation Therapy Program.
Sayre CBOC (Fund #8160) Funds are used to support programs and activities for Veteran patients at the Sayre Community Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC).
Scranton Vet Center (Fund #8140) Funds are used to support programs and activities for Veteran patients at the Scranton Vet Center.
Social Work Emergency Fund (Fund #8140) Funds are used to support programs and activities for Veteran patients at the Scranton Vet Center.
Substance Treatment and Recovery Programs (STAR/SARRTP) (Fund #8131) Funds are used to purchased items to support Veteran patients receiving care in the STAR program – this includes intensive outpatient (ISTAR), general outpatients (OSTAR) and residential (SARRTP) programs. Items such as personal hygiene products, technology resources (i.e.: laptops, iPads, tablets, etc.), food/decorations for holidays/celebrations and recreation/leisure materials are commonly purchased.
VAVS Committee (Fund #8461) Funds are used to support the volunteer recognition activities and items throughout the year. Also, funds in this account may be used to supplement new, or ongoing programs, as requested from VA Services/Programs when presented to the committee during their quarterly meetings.
Visual Impairment Program (Fund #8528) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the Visual Impairment Program. The Visual Impairment Program provides training, equipment and support for Veterans who are blind or visually impaired.
Williamsport Vet Center (Fund #8513) Funds are used to support programs and activities for Veteran patients at the Williamsport Vet Center.
Women Veterans (Fund #8519) Funds are used to support the needs and activities of the Women Veterans Program.
In-kind donation suggestions
Some people prefer to give money while others prefer to donate specific items needed by our Veterans and we appreciate all forms of generosity. We accept in-kind donations of specific items to provide the supplemental resources necessary to support Veterans receiving care at any of our facilities In-kind donations should be new, clean and in good condition. Below are some items we always appreciate receiving:
- Short/Long sleeve shirts (men and women, small - 3XL)
- Sweatshirts/Sweatpants (men and women, small - 3XL)
- Briefs/Boxers/Boxer Briefs (small - 3XL)
- Women’s underwear/Sports bras (small - 3XL)
- Razors (men and women’s disposable twin blade-name brand only)
- Shampoo, conditioner, body wash combos (3 in 1)
- Gift Cards (Walmart, Target, Gas cards, Grocery Cards, etc.)
- Hand warmers
- First Aid Kits
- Batteries (AA and AAA)
- Adult coloring books
- Colored pencils/Crayons/Markers
- Pens, pencils, and pencil sharpeners
- Travel DVD players
- CD players (desktop)
Download our complete needs list here: Link
Note: We do not accept donations of medical equipment (i.e.: chair lifts, wheelchairs, beds, walkers, bedside commodes, etc.), bar soap, VHS tapes, mouthwash with alcohol, hotel toiletries or used clothing of any kind.
Special donation projects
Operation Diaper Bag provides expecting and new Veteran moms the essential items needed to care for a new baby. Diaper bags containing items such as bibs, onesies, burping cloths, baby wipes, diapers, bottles, lotion, wash, etc are distributed to new moms to assist them on their parenthood journey.
Download the Operation Diaper Bag flyer here: Link
For more information on volunteering, donating items, or to schedule a drop-off time, please contact one of the Center for Development and Civic Engagement team members.
VA Wilkes-Barre Medical Center
Center for Development and Civic Engagement
First Floor, North
1111 East End Boulevard
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18711